I had to nip into work so decided to chance going in on the bus so that I could walk home through some different scenery.
It had snowed the previous day and after a cold night the snow, underfoot, had turned decidedly crispy. I walked to the bus stop and the bus duly arrived. Luckily it was fairly empty (social distancing) and luckily not too many more got on.
I alighted near to Aston University and made my way down Cardigan Street towards the canal which was then followed, through Digbeth ‘tunnel’, past the Banana Warehouse and as far as Gt. Barr Street.
From Gt. Barr Street it was but a short stroll to work.
After a few hours at work, I got changed and started the walk home.
I had planned to follow the Digeth Branch to Salford Junction then take the Birmingham Fazeley to the Tyburn house, Castle Bromwich and home.
I crunched my way along the canal, descending a number of locks (it’s all downhill) and after passing Star City turned right heading towards Tamworth.
All was going well and the sun even popped out now and again.
By the time I was approaching The Tyburn House, I was feeling great and decided to continue along the canal a little further.
Half a mile further along, I left the canal, crossed over the Lichfield Road (A38) and made my way around the perimeter of Castle Vale.
One thing I didn’t expect to see was a Shetland pony. I discovered some stables and looking beyond the little pony spotted some full sized horses in a field at the rear. I continued around ‘The Vale’ finally emerging opposite B&Q.
After going over the River Tame and under the M6, I ascended the, in places slippery, hill to St. Mary and St. Margaret Church. I went around the houses a bit through Castle Bromwich arriving home after a very pleasant eleven and a half mile walk. I was wearing my newish HOKA One One ATR shoes which provided good grip in the snow and ice.
After a bit of a tidy up, I took the dogs out for a walk around the block. It was still rather icy and hence slippery which the dogs, Misty especially, did not like.
After a clean up, I entered my mileages into the various trackers and discovered that my total for the year has now crept up to 163 miles. I should, barring accidents, clock up over two hundred miles by the end of the first month and well on target for completing Route 66 – only 2,155 miles to go!
Looking at the map of my progress across the US, I see that I am just about to pass the intriguingly names Kickapoo Creek Country Park.
Impressively, looking at a map of the whole route, it is now obvious that I have moved as there is definite space between Chicago and my marker.